March 5, 2020

Inland Marine Insurance – What Does That Cover?


When I first heard the term “Inland Marine Insurance”, I thought it sounded like an oxymoron.  How do you have insurance for marine items that are “inland”?  In fact, inland marine insurance almost fits that line of thought.  It is insurance for a wide assortment of specialized property made for land, not for oceans or water-travel. Inland marine insurance is a type of business property insurance that can include coverage for scheduled items on a policy, and it can also include a general limit for many items that fall under the same category.  This is often included on policies for … Continue reading

February 24, 2020

Green Team Spotlight


In 2019, I was fortunate to be part of a group of VAST employees who developed a plan to implement recycling in the office.  We had a desire not only to recycle, but also to reduce the carbon footprint of VAST and help the environment though waste reduction, recycling, energy conservation, and sustainability efforts.  Through the determination of a handful of dedicated individuals in the office, the Green Team was born. Throughout the year, the Green Team assessed the current state of VAST’s recycling efforts through Waste Audits and offered the employees of VAST opportunities to recycle rigids, fibers, batteries, … Continue reading

February 24, 2020

Notary Bonds – What Does That Mean?


Many people have heard of a “notary” or have needed a document “notarized”, but what does that really mean or entail? Well, let’s start with what a Notary Bond is. It is a legally binding contract guaranteeing the Notary (the person authorized) will complete tasks ethically while abiding by the law. If a notary does not adhere to the law, a claim can be made against the bond by the issuing state or those harmed as a result of the notary’s actions. If the claim is valid, the bond amount is used to indemnify the harmed parties. This protects the … Continue reading

January 17, 2020

The Importance of Longshoreman Coverage


If you own a business and work near navigable waters, it is very likely that you need Longshoreman coverage.  This coverage is for your worker’s compensation policy to protect your employees who work on or near navigable waters of the United States, including employees working in any capacity near the water.  Working near the water can include anything from loading and unloading a vessel, doing work on a vessel, repair work, construction, and much more. The Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA) is similar to the Jones Act, but it was created for a different category of workers.  It … Continue reading

January 9, 2020

The Benefits of a Break


Have you ever been working on something, and realize that it is taking way longer than it should? If so, a 15 minute or so break from the project or task at hand could do wonders for productivity and efficiency. These breaks provide much more benefits than one might not have previously considered. They can make you not only more productive, but more creative and attentive! Working without a break throughout the day could be detrimental. The brain needs a rest, as research indicates that working nonstop can affect the connections in your brain, increasing the risk of developing neurological … Continue reading

December 18, 2019

Invest In Yourself – Personal Development


The term personal development, although used often, seems to be thrown around rather loosely. I found it best defined in an article from Wisdomtimes; “the idea of personal development is about harnessing and enriching the innate potential of the individual to ultimately become a realized, happier, and balanced person in a chaotic and ever-changing world.”  In many professions you are mandated to keep up on your CE (continuing education) but I feel just as important is having some standard of personal development. I am grateful that here at VAST we take great pride in both, and really invest in the … Continue reading

December 11, 2019

Business Auto – Drive Other Car Coverage


In today’s insurance world for Michigan, auto insurance is a big question mark looming in the distance.  Lawmakers and insurance carriers are currently deciding how everything will fit in place with the new auto insurance laws coming into effect July 2020.  The changes will influence both personal and commercial auto insurance, and no one has concrete answers on all of the details quite yet. If you own a business that possesses autos, most likely you have a business auto insurance policy.  No matter how many vehicles are on the business auto policy, if you or other employees use them for … Continue reading

December 4, 2019

Winter Travel


It’s that magical time of year again – Winter! This is the time of year when snow, ice, and the elements make our travel a little more precarious than it already is. Driving in the winter time, especially over long distances to visit family and friends, can seem like a daunting task. However, there are steps / precautions you can take to help assist your travel being as stress free / safe as possible. Be sure your vehicle is winter road ready. It is a good idea to have your vehicle inspected by a licensed and insured mechanic to ensure … Continue reading

November 15, 2019

The Value of Umbrella Policies


If you own a business, you probably have insurance policies for general liability, property, auto liability, and possibly workers’ compensation if you have employees.  However, there is one standard liability policy that is sometimes overlooked – umbrella liability.  No, it’s not insurance for those things you hold over your head when it rains, but much like those types of umbrellas, umbrella liability policies provide extra coverage. Commercial umbrella liability policies offer an extra layer of protection for businesses with claims against bodily injury, property damage, and other liability claims.  The policies are designed to extend coverage when your business’ general … Continue reading

October 30, 2019

Motor Truck Cargo Insurance


Your business has been approached by a local contractor with an opportunity to transport the contractor’s equipment from job site to job site for the next year. The opportunity is a great one. It will ensure that you will have a positive cash flow, and work for your employees, for at least the next year without any interruptions. You are reviewing the contract requirements, including the necessary insurance requirements, and you come across an insurance coverage you have never heard of; motor truck cargo insurance.  You wonder to yourself, what is motor truck cargo insurance, and do I have that … Continue reading

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